MediumPigments and gilding on sized cloth
DimensionsWork : 2 1/2 x 2 1/4 x 1/2 in. (6.35 x 5.72 x 1.27 cm)
Credit LineGift of David Kamansky and Gerald Wheaton
Bhaishajyaguru is more popularly known as the Medicine Buddha. His history and attributes were first revealed by Shakyamuni Buddha in an early sutra, and were subsequently augmented by later generations of teachers and commentators. In Mongolia and many other Asian countries, Bhaishajyaguru is invoked through various meditation practices and devotional rituals for help in healing physical, mental and spiritual illnesses. Bhaishajyaguru is usually portrayed with dark blue skin, sitting cross-legged with one hand in his lap holding an alms bowl or medicine jar, and the other hand extended in front him holding a stalk of the myrobalan plant, which is said to cure all illnesses. The broad face and shoulders evident in this Medicine Buddha are typical of Mongolian Buddhist figure painting.